It was literally a 15-minute drive home from the hospital. But during both pregnancies, I spent days deciding what outfit would be just the right thing to introduce my daughters to the world. For many babies, the coming home outfit is the first “real” clothing they will put on. It is also likely to be shared across social media celebrating the big moment of leaving the cocoon of the hospital and entering the real world. It makes sense then that many moms-to-be put a little extra thought and planning into the iconic outfit.
Of course, that doesn’t mean you have to. Bringing a baby home from the hospital is a joyous (albeit slightly terrifying) time for new parents. The outfit they are wearing is not going to make or break the experience. There are, however, some key things to keep in mind when planning your newborn’s coming home outfit. From comfort, weather, and practical advice, we are sharing our top tips for choosing a newborn’s outfit and highlighting a few of our favorites down below.
Tips for Choosing Baby’s Coming Home Outfit
Whether you live just around the corner from your birth center or have a long drive ahead, most babies will be traveling home in a car seat. Babies should be dressed keeping both comfort and weather in mind. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
Dressing for the Weather & Warmth
Your location or time of year when giving birth may have an impact on outfit choices. You want to ensure your baby is either warm enough in the cold, or keep them from overheating in warmer temperatures. However, as a rule of thumb, most new babies should be dressed with warmth in mind. Babies have a more difficult time regulating their own body temperature and therefore rely on us to dress them appropriately.
A long-sleeve footed pajama or layette set is a great choice for most newborns. A hat and socks (if not using footed pants) will help keep them warm without risking overheating. Be sure to bring a few different sizes of hats if you want one to match the outfit you pick. I have experienced both having too large of a hat and a baby with a giant head that did not fit a newborn hat and was lucky to have a second option for both. Most hospitals provide hats that would work perfectly fine for the car ride home too.
A Few Practical Tips for Dressing Your Newborn for Travel Home:
- While your focus might be on the car ride home, remember to dress baby in something that will make life easier once you get home. Fancy is cute until you have to undress and redress a fussy or sleepy newborn.
- Frequent diaper changes mean you will have to continually undo snaps, or deal with complicated articles of clothing. Make it easy on yourself and go with something simple!
- Bring two outfits (in two different sizes) in case you end up with a bigger baby. I had a 10 pounder and she did not fit into many newborn outfits!
- Onesie might work fine. But as a new mom, you will absolutely notice and cringe at the car seat straps touching their sensitive little skin, so a light pair of pants or leggings might be a helpful addition.
- When looking for material go for something soft and not scratchy, like cotton or bamboo.
- Pro Mom Tip: Go for footed pants instead of pants and socks. They are so much easier to use, stay on, and keep track of!
My personal preference is an adorable long-sleeved footed onesie (or footie pajamas as they are often called). This provides just enough coverage on the skin to protect against sun, wind, or chill, while being light enough to help them remain comfortable (or as comfortable as you can be as a 1-3 day old baby being strapped into a bucket seat). They are easy to change diapers in and can transition from car seat to arms to bassinet without issue.
25 Adorable Coming Home Outfits for Baby
With all of that said, here are our picks for the most adorable outfits for bringing baby home:
If you are the proud parent of a preemie or are finally making the long-awaited journey home from the NICU, an adorable set that celebrates your little one, like this Brave Little One layette set by Luvable Friends, couldn’t be more perfect. As a bonus, it comes with both a short-sleeved onesie and a long-sleeve top, so it will be easy to adjust for weather or room temperature.
Or a pink polka dot preemie outfit with a matching cap would look adorable on a sweet baby girl. (Here’s the blue version of it too.) The bear feet are guaranteed to make visiting relatives say “Awww” with major heart eyes!
Make a Welcoming Statement
Outfits or hats with cute sayings like “Hello World” or “I’m new here” make for a cute and timely photo opp. Both Amazon and Etsy have lots of great choices for both boys and girls. This New To The Crew set has just the right amount of attitude for bringing home your new little boy. And this baseball-themed “Take Me Home” outfit is a home run for the big day.
A long sleeve onesie set like this “Brand Sparkling New” set with baby leg warmers (which are just as cute as they sound) is also a smart way to have easy access for diaper changes. The fold-over hand mitts are another benefit to prevent scratching!
Personalized onesies are also a special way to announce both baby and their name to the world, and make for a great keepsake later on. 🙂
There is nothing cuter than a doting Big Brother or Big Sister with a newborn sibling. Older siblings can share their excitement for, and match, their new best friend with these adorable Coming Home shirts available on Etsy.
Having twins? Coordinated colors, funny Twin A/ Twin B, or checkbox names are also popular. We love this Adventure Awaits full outfit set with personalization as a great representation of what’s to come!
Still another option would be to have your newest addition wear the same outfit as a sibling or family member. It is both meaningful and fun to compare photos after the fact. My oldest Charlie wore the same hat her older cousin wore as an infant, and it gave both me and my sister all the feels when looking through pictures.
This classic gray striped set is perfect for a modern minimalist family. It can be used for children of either sex, as well as multiple children over the years to make a sweet family tradition! The kimono style makes it more modern. Kimono onesies are great by the way to avoid having to go over a baby’s head, which many babies hate early on!
We also love these adorable neutral options that include either a hat or a bow. This way you are equipped no matter what gender you have. 😉
And we don’t want to forget sweet options for rainbow babies and babies born at home. 🙂
With dainty flowers for a little princess, this sweet footed set is a parent favorite on Amazon with over 1,200 reviews.
We are also loving this onesie and hat set from Jessica Simpson’s baby line, and how the shoulder ruffles add just the right feminine touch for new little ladies. There are also floral ruffled onesies that are too cute for words!
Despite what you may think, babies DO NOT need a jacket on in the car. In fact, it is not recommended as part of car seat safety guidelines. Faux Jackets sets like this one from Little Me, however, would be adorable as a going home outfit, it shows she is ready to hit the road with the cropped cardigan design.
Warm/Cold Weather Winners
Live somewhere hot? A short sleeve romper might work well. The tropical print on this 2-way zip Parade Organics romper is a great choice with a modern design. So is this beautiful heirloom-quality smock made with lightweight batiste fabric to keep baby comfortable and cool when going home.
Having a baby in the winter? He or she will be winter-ready in this cable knit sweater romper. The pristine white is ideal for both boys and girls (though watch out for those early diapers, this might be tricky to get stains out!)
Do you really need a special going home outfit for a baby? No, of course not. But they do need to be wearing something. And it is a once in a lifetime occasion as that baby (or babies) transitions to life at home with the family. So have as much fun as you want in selecting the perfect one!
On a budget? These outfits can certainly be worn again. Even selecting a favorite outfit from baby shower gifts is one way to make the day memorable without incurring additional costs. It is one decision those first few weeks that can be simple, unlike many of the rest!